Malaysiakini reported today that outspoken former Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) panel member Tan Sri Robert Phang has been cleared of the corruption allegations made against him.
This follows the confirmation by the MACC director of investigations Mustafar Ali in an SMS in response to a query from Malaysiakini.
Phang had been issued with a letter from Mustafar, dated November last year, clearing him of the allegation made by an anonymous blogger.
However, the letter from the MACC that cleared Phang also stated that it cannot be used for the purpose of publication by the media.
The MACC Chief Commissioner Datuk Abu Kassim Mohamed should be censured in Parliament if he cannot give satisfactory explanation why MACC suppressed information for some 15 months that Phang had been cleared of corruption allegations made against him.
In this connection, the Chairman of the MACC’s Operations Review Panel, Tan Sri Hadenan Abdul Jalil should also explain why he withheld information about Phang being cleared of corruption allegations some 15 months ago in May last year.
Hadenan had said that MACC “had failed to find enough evidence to charge Phang”, which contributed to the impression that MACC investigations on Phang was still ongoing.
Wasn’t it true that the MACC and its Operations Review Panel cleared both the Attorney-General, Tan Sri Gani Patail and Phang at the same meeting in May last year?
If so, why Hadenan only announced after the MACC Operations Review Panel meeting in May last year that MACC investigations had cleared the Attorney-General of a corruption allegation related to his haj pilgrimage, that “the panel is satisfied that the investigation did not indicate any criminal offence”, but conspicuously omitted or withheld information that Phang had also been cleared of corruption allegations against him?
Recently, Phang lodged a police report calling on the MACC and the police to investigate allegations against Gani for abuses of power as described in a new book entitled “Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail: Pemalsu, Penipu, Penjenayah?”
Phang said the AG must investigate the accusations made against him as AG and to sue the author of the book for defamation if the allegations are wrong.
It would appear that the Government Transformation Programme to combat corruption and abuses of power in high places has degenerated into a double battle of Gani vs Robert Phang as well as Gani vs Mat Zain.
Malaysians are seriously concerned that the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak seems to be completely impotent although the country is having the most controversial Attorney-General in history, with the most number of serious allegations of corruption and abuses of power against the holder of the office of Attorney-General in the nation’s 55-year history.
Only two days ago, the former Kuala Lumpur Criminal Investigation Department chief Mat Zain Ibrahim has sent the latest of his series of letters asking the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak why he is not prepared to have a tribunal to investigate the Attorney-General despite an abundance of allegations and evidence against Gani but could give the nod to the formation of a royal commission of inquiry (RCI) on illegal immigrants in Sabah.
The latest serious allegation made by Mat Zain, who was the investigation officer into the Anwar Ibrahim “black eye” assault in 1998 and subsequently Anwar’s four police reports lodged between July 9 and August 20, 1999 on political personalities including former Finance Minister, Tun Daim Zainuddin, former international trade and industry minister Datuk Paduka Rafidah Aziz, former Malacca Chief Minister Tan Sri Rahim Thamby Cik is that Gani, like PKR strategic director Rafizi Ramli, had been guilty of violating the Banking and Financial Institutions Act (Bafia).
Both Phang and Mat Zain have made very serious allegations against Gani and the Prime Minister cannot continue to be indifferent to having the most controversial Attorney-General in the nation’s history, as the Attorney-General is the chief legal officer of the land who should be upholding the law rather than being seen or perceived as the chief law-breaker.
For these reasons, Najib should seriously reconsider his earlier refusal and move forward to establish a judicial tribunal to address once and for all the many serious allegations of corruption and abuses of power made against Gani by both Mat Zain and Phang to clear the perception that the Attorney-General has become the chief law-breaker instead of being the chief law-upholder in the land.